Creek (people)

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Muscogee portraits

English, Creek

Protestantism, Four Mother's Society, other

Muskogean peoples: Alabama, Coushatta, Miccosukee, Chickasaw, Choctaw, and Seminole

The Muscogee (or Muskogee), also known as the Creek or Creeks, are a Native American people traditionally from the southeastern United States.[3] Mvskoke is their name in traditional spelling. Modern Muscogees live primarily in Oklahoma, Alabama, Georgia, and Florida. Their language, Mvskoke, is a member of the Muscogee branch of the Muscogean language family.

They were descendants of the Mississippian culture peoples, who built earthwork mounds at their regional chiefdoms located throughout the Mississippi River valley and its tributaries. The historian Walter Williams and others believe the early Spanish explorers encountered ancestors of the Muscogee when they visited Mississippian-culture chiefdoms in the Southeast in the mid-16th century.[4]

The Muscogee were the first Native Americans to be "civilized" under George Washington's civilization plan. In the 19th century, the Muscogee were known as one of the "Five Civilized Tribes", because they had integrated numerous cultural and technological practices of their more recent European American neighbors. In 1811, the Shawnee leader Tecumseh, with the help of a prophetic comet and earthquake, convinced the Muscogee to resist the efforts of civilization. The Red Stick War, begun as a civil war within the Muscogee Nation, enmeshed them in the War of 1812.

During Indian Removal of 1830, most of the Muscogee Nation moved to Indian Territory. The Muscogee Creek Nation based in Oklahoma is federally recognized, as is the Poarch Band of Creek Indians of Alabama. Creek tribe communities also have formed in Louisiana and Texas.

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